Tuesday, October 23, 2012

PPP, Mehran Bank Scandal & Memory Loss

2002: We never learn from history By Ardeshir Cowasjee 21 July 2002: After lunch, Nawaz brought up the subject of how Aslam Beg early in 1991 had sought a meeting with him (then prime minister) to which he brought Major-General Asad Durrani, chief of the ISI. They told him that funds for vital on-going covert operations (not identified by Nawaz) were drying up, how they had a foolproof plan to generate money by dealing in drugs. They asked for his permission to associate themselves with the drug trade, assuring him of full secrecy and no chance of any trail leading back to them. Nawaz remarked that on hearing this he felt the roof had caved in on him. He told them he could have nothing to do with such a plan and refused to give his approval. The Washington Post had just broken Kamran's story and when I asked why it had not broken earlier, he told me how they check and recheck, and that in the meantime, he had been busy with the Mehrangate affair on which, between May and August, he had filed seven stories. We must again ask: was Nawaz capable of saying what he did? Yes. Did Kamran invent the whole thing? Not likely. Is The Washington Post a responsible paper with credibility? Yes. Everybody who is anyone in Washington reads it over breakfast. Has it ever made mistakes? Yes. What is so earth-shattering about using drugs to make money? Drugs have been trafficked and used for covert operations for ages, by warlords, statesmen, chieftans and generals, used to gain territory, to buy or to harm the enemy. Remember how the staid Victorians of the British empire used opium to China's detriment. Remember the Americans and how they traded drugs in Vietnam, and the Iran-Contra affair. Can we believe Aslam Beg? Judging by his behaviour and record, no. Are we expected to believe Asad Durrani, a clever professional spook? Of course not. REFERENCE: We never learn from history By Ardeshir Cowasjee 21 July 2002 Sunday 10 Jamadi-ul-Awwal 1423 http://archives.dawn.com/weekly/cowas/20020721.htm

 Rigging Pakistan's Election DAWN News 6th Jan 2008 - 1

Rigging Pakistan's Election DAWN News 6th Jan... by SalimJanMazari

ISLAMABAD: Lauding the landmark Supreme Court judgment of declaring the 1990 elections as “rigged”, Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf on Friday vowed to bring the culprits behind the conspiracy to justice, DawnNews reported. Speaking during a press conference in Islamabad, Ashraf declared the day of the ‘historic’ verdict as a “day of democratic triumph.” The Supreme Court, earlier today, ordered legal proceedings against a former head of intelligence and former army chief over allegations that politicians were bankrolled to stop the current ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) from winning the 1990 election. It was a landmark ruling from the apex court 16 years after Air Marshal (retd) Asghar Khan filed a case, accusing the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency of doling out money to a group of politicians in the 1990s. Prime Minister Ashraf said the people who accepted money to rig the elections must apologize to the nation. “It will be up to the masses whether they want to forgive the culprits or not,” he added. The establishment had robbed the public mandate 22 years ago, said the premier. “History, by bringing the truth to surface, has dignified the PPP in front of the nation and has put some serious questions to the rivals,” he added. The PM vowed to get every penny of the nation back from the culprits by obeying the ruling of the apex court. The prime minister disregarded the impression that a ‘political cell’ was still operating from the Presidency. He vowed to conduct free and transparent probe into the matter and said the results will be made public. REFERENCE: Ashraf vows to bring culprits of rigging 1990 election to justice 19th October, 2012 http://dawn.com/2012/10/19/ashraf-vows-to-bring-culprits-of-rigging-1990-election-to-justice/
Dawn News on Operation Midnight Jackal (2009) by SalimJanMazari

Who is behind the ‘get Nawaz’ campaign? Ansar Abbasi Wednesday, August 26, 2009: ISLAMABAD: The fact that Nawaz Sharif was once the establishment’s blue-eyed boy and that the creation of the IJI was the ISI’s work are well known and undeniable, but the general perception is that today he is being targeted to save Musharraf’s skin. It is premature to say who is behind this ‘get Nawaz’ campaign to deter him from seeking Musharraf’s trial under Article 6 of the Constitution. Though the immediate suspect for many is the invisible, military-led establishment, there are indications of involvement of some key government players in this blame-game. Brigadier (retd) Imtiaz, whose recent statements have created ripples and upset the PML-N and its chief, however, denied that he has been playing into the hands of the establishment or the government. He insists that he just had the urge to share with the nation past secrets, irrespective of who benefits and who is damaged politically because of his revelations. Talking to this correspondent, Brig Imtiaz said that he is not part of any plan to save Musharraf from trial. “Instead, I am a strong advocate of holding Musharraf accountable for his crimes against Pakistan,” the former ISI spy of ‘midnight jackals’ fame and ex-director general of the Intelligence Bureau said. Regarding the ‘midnight jackal’ operation, which was meant to manoeuvre a no-confidence against the Benazir Bhutto government, he said that he was once called by the then Army chief General Aslam Beg, who desired in-house change of the government arguing that the Army was facing problems from the government vis-a-vis the country’s nuclear programme and the Afghan policy. But the PML-N leader and party’s spokesman Pervez Rashid is confident that Brigadier Imtiaz is playing someone’s dirty game. Rashid said that Brig Imtiaz’s interviews and MQM Altaf Hussain’s statements are part of the strategy to malign Nawaz Sharif and prevent him from pursuing Musharraf’s trial. He said that there are many elements who fear that if Musharraf is tried for his unconstitutional actions, then they too would face the music for their part in the misdoings. So they have launched this anti-Nawaz campaign. He, however, expressed the resolve of his party to continue pressing for upholding the rule of law for which Musharraf’s trial is necesary. Imtiaz claims that he still has liking for Nawaz Sharif but it is not possible for him to withhold the truth anymore. He denied that he had approached different television channels for interview. He also denied that he has recently met Rehman Malik, the interior minister. But Dr Shahid Masood of Geo’s ‘Meray Mutabik’ told this correspondent that the Brigadier approached him for an appearance in his programme. Pervez Rashid endorsed Dr Shahid Masood’s view and said that Brigadier Imtiaz contacted different television channels, which in his view is a clear indication of a well thought out strategy to malign the PML-N top leader. Meanwhile, a London-based source confided to this correspondent that a key Pakistani diplomat from Washington recently visited London to meet Musharraf. It is believed that certain players in the government are in close liaison with the ousted dictator and want to defeat the bid to try Musharraf on high treason charges. The source said that a British national of Pakistani origin, who runs spices business in London, is financing pro-Musharraf campaign and is even organising Musharraf’s meetings with different media persons to oppose the demand for his trial. Recently he organised Musharraf’s meeting with some pro-Musharraf media anchorpersons at the residence of a Pakistani dentist there. REFERENCE: Who is behind the ‘get Nawaz’ campaign? Ansar Abbasi Wednesday, August 26, 2009 http://www.thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDetail.aspx?ID=24096&Cat=13&dt=8/26/2009

Establishment — the main target in current fiasco Ansar Abbasi Wednesday, September 02, 2009 : ISLAMABAD: No matter who has authored the script of the ongoing Brig Imtiaz tamasha, engulfing the political arena, the establishment that includes the military-led intelligence agencies and the Pakistan Army have emerged as the main villains, presumably as the authors of the fiasco wanted. Nawaz Sharif and his party are uncomfortable; demand for Musharraf’s trial has been sidetracked at least for the time being; the MQM gets into a position where it believes that its stand is vindicated but the Jinnahpur controversy also created an opportunity for its opponents for a much open criticism of the party and its policies; the issues like the scrapping of 17th Amendment have now become more complex with the two leading parties setting up for a political confrontation after the PML-N finds the Presidency behind the current smear campaign against its top leadership; however, President Asif Zardari is least affected by this recently started political wrangling. It rather has favoured him by temporarily silencing the guns that were targeting him and the government from all around for their alleged misrule, on charges of corruption, the sugar scandal and the reported ruining of the state institutions. The PML-N, which is badly hurt by the revelations about the alleged provision of Rs3.5 million to its party chief Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif by former ISI chief Lt-Gen (retd) Asad Durrani, is pointing its finger at the president to have been the architect of the get-Nawaz campaign. However, the Presidency has strongly refuted these charges but different presidential aides are issuing the kind of statements that apparently show the presidency is getting amused with the situation. However, what is interesting is the unanimity between all these warring political forces showing their abhorrence over the role of the establishment in country’s politics. But in a strange dichotomy except the PML-N, the other two major warring political forces — the PPP and the MQM — are not interested in proceeding against Gen (retd) Musharraf under Article 6 of the Constitution. As one scans through the debates that took place in different talk shows of various private television channels after the recent emergence of the Jinnahpur controversy, the establishment is found to be the target of all. The MQM, which had been the most trusted supporter of Gen Musharraf during his nine years rule, says that its Quaid Altaf Hussain is not returning to Pakistan because of the establishment. The PPP, too, said that the military operators and intelligences agencies have not been adhering to the command of the civilian governments whereas the PML-N is of the view that it has repeatedly found the establishment and Army chiefs overstretching their mandate. While appearing as a guest in one of the talk shows, PML-N information secretary Ahsan Iqbal has said it has been a harsh reality in Pakistan that policy decisions on some specific security and international issues have not been taken with the consultation or consent of the civilian government. He quoted the Kargil issue as one example and urged upon the need of rationalising the power structure in such a manner that no step could be taken against the wishes of the democratic government. He said the PML-N differed with former Army chief Gen (retd) Aslam Beg after he issued a statement on the Gulf war that did not match the government’s policy. He said similarly Gen (retd) Asif Nawaz exceeded from the mandate he was given before launching the military operation against criminals, dacoits and anti-social elements in Sindh in 1992. Another Army Chief Gen (retd) Jehangir Karamat, he said, was removed because of his statement on the setting up of National Security Council. He said the PML-N government differed with Gen (retd) Musharraf on the Kargil issue. Senior PML-N leader Khwaja Muhammad Asif was of the view that the military-led intelligence agencies have been extremely powerful and instrumental in the making and breaking of the government. On the issue of the military operation in Karachi and the target killings there, Khwaja Asif said the agencies were mainly responsible for that. He said in both the 1992-93 and 1995-96 operations in Karachi, these were the military intelligence agencies that had played the important role. Interestingly, it was Khwaja Asif, who admitted that had the agencies not been so powerful MQM Quaid Altaf Hussain would have now been in Pakistan. 

Khwaja Asif said Altaf Hussain’s apprehensions towards the intelligences agencies, are barring him to come back and lead his party, which according to the N-leader would serve the political culture better. Khwaja Asif also pointed out that the present situation in the tribal areas, Balochistan, Northern Areas and in Southern Punjab is also the outcome of what the agencies did during the last 20-22 years. The PML-N leaders have been distancing itself from the 1992 military operation against the MQM and insisted that it was the Army which had overstepped. In return, the MQM leaders, too, were mainly complaining to the PML-N and its leader Nawaz Sharif over his silence and the failure to stop the 1992 military operation against the MQM. MQM leader Haider Abbas Rizvi endorsed Khwaja’s views and said Hakim Saeed was killed by the agencies but the MQM was blamed for his murder. He lamented that the MQM workers were killed in an extra-judicial manner; military courts were created to try Muttahida workers, who were punished illegally and in violation of the Constitution through summary trials by these courts. Rizvi said in the 1992 operation what he called the Haqiqi terrorists were riding in military jeeps during the Army’s operation against the MQM. “It was all planted,” he said, and lamented the then-prime minister could not do anything to stop the operation. Wasim Akhtar, another MQM leader, said in one the private channel that it’s a pity that the largest political parties of the country are today still dependent on Army and America. Dr Nadeem Ahsan of the MQM said MQM workers do not want Altaf Hussain to come back. He said the MQM Chief’s life is facing threats from the enemies of Pakistan. When asked to name these enemies, he pointed to both internal and external forces. When further probed, Dr Nadeem Ahsan initially named the Taliban and later said, “There are some other forces too. You can also name establishment.” When asked if the MQM fears from the establishment, he said, “Yes”. PPP information secretary Fauzia Wahab, too, in a talkshow talked of the political influence of the ISI which, according to her, grew after the agencies exposure in the Afghan war against former Soviet Union. Wahab, who is generally considered as her master’s (President) voice, said during the Afghan war the ISI became very resourceful and developed new technologies, which the agencies has to use somewhere to prove its worth. Referring to the history and also finding it true in the present day Pakistan, she said one thing is clear that in Pakistan democracy never got strengthened and the civilian authority has never been maintained. She said in her view there does not exist any central authority. Fauzia Wahab also added the 1992 operation is the reflection of the fact that the military operators at that time were not ready to concede the supremacy of the civilian leadership. She, however, believed the military interventions can’t be stopped by hanging a dictator but by improving the performance of parliament and through the vision and greater assertion of the political leadership. Dr Firdous Aashiq Awan, another PPP leader, blamed the establishment for the PPP government’s “mistake” to launch operation in Karachi against the MQM in 1995-96. REFERENCE: Establishment — the main target in current fiasco Ansar Abbasi Wednesday, September 02, 2009 http://www.thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDetail.aspx?ID=24254&Cat=13&dt=9%2F2%2F2009

Brig Imtiaz reveals CIA plots Ansar Abbasi Tuesday, September 01, 2009 : ISLAMABAD: Former spymaster Brigadier (retd) Imtiaz Ahmad, whose recent statements caused ripples in the country’s political arena, now talks of a much serious issue ñ Pakistan’s nuclear programme. He claims to have foiled two American CIA plots to sabotage the country’s nuclear programme. While serving for the ISI, he recalled, he had conducted the operation ‘Rising Sun’ in 1979 that successfully thwarted a CIA plot to target Pakistanís nuclear programme. The operation concluded with the arrest and conviction of a Pakistani CIA agent, declaration of a few undercover CIA agents and US diplomats as personae non gratae and their return. In the second case, Brigadier (retd) Imtiaz said, he, as the Intelligence Bureau chief, had discovered another CIA plot being operated through a third country mainly to hit the countryís nuclear programme. Talking to The News here on Monday, Brigadier Imtiaz said that in the late 70s, the CIA spotted one Rafiq Munshi, a graduate of Karachi University, and took him to the US to be trained on nuclear technicalities and intelligence skills. Later, he got appointed in Kanup Karachi as an engineer. It was in 1979 when he was launched back by the CIA with a mission to penetrate into the country’s nuclear network with two clear objectives. Firstly, to provide them (CIA) information about the nuclear programme’s development, security and protection measures for the nuclear installations and identification of nuclear scientists working on sensitive assignments. Secondly, he was assigned to create an opportunity, when given signal, for a technical sabotage of certain nuclear installations. Imtiaz said that Rafiq Munshi was provided substantial financial aid and was made to operate in close coordination with a few special CIA operators, who were undercover agents and working under diplomatic cover in the US embassy in Islamabad and its consulate in Karachi. Imtiaz said during those days he was posted in Karachi as a Lt-Colonel and the ISI chief in Sindh. 

After getting the clue of the plot and personally monitoring it for several months, he disclosed, he conducted the operation ‘Rising Sun’. He said that the operation was conducted in a very secret manner and it was only between him and the then DG ISI Maj General Riaz Muhammad Khan as to what was going on against the countryís nuclear programme. “I fell impelled to pay greatest tributes to the then DG ISI Maj General Riaz Muhammad Khan, who not only encouraged me but also gave me complete authority to fearlessly conduct the operation,” Imtiaz said, adding that the operation that consumed 8-10 months finally ended up successfully with the arrest of Rafiq Munshi from Karachi while the undercover CIA agents were returned to Washington after being declared as personae non gratae. According to Imtiaz, he was later summoned by the then ruler General Ziaul Haq, whom he briefed on the operation ‘Rising Sun’ and its outcome. “After hearing all the details, General Ziaul Haq immediately went to another room to talk to the US president. And what I assessed from his body language as soon as he returned after making the telephone call was a clear message that Zia had lodged a forceful protest with the Americans over its plot against Pakistan’s nuclear programme.” Brigadier (retd) Imtiaz said that he was decorated with Sitar-i-Rasalat for foiling the CIA plot. However, he said, Rafique Munshi, who was sentenced to life imprisonment, was released during Benazir Bhutto’s first government and got closely associated with the Pakistan People’s Party. Talking about the second CIA plot targeting Pakistanís nuclear programme that he had successfully foiled, he said that he did it during his stint as DG Intelligence Bureau in Nawaz Sharifís first tenure and at a time when tension between the then president Ghulam Ishaq Khan and PM Nawaz Sharif was at its peak. Sharing the details of the plot, he said that he got a clue about an individual, who was in contact with an Islamabad-based ambassador of a European country, which was operating for the CIA as a third country. “I personally got in contact with the individual and made a concerted effort to motivate him to work in the national interest instead of becoming an agent of the countryís enemies.” Imtiaz said that he had succeeded in persuading the individual, who later agreed to work for Pakistan as a double agent and for the same reason, the ex-DG IB said, he was duty bound not to disclose his identity. The retired brigadier said that through briefing and debriefings of the same individual, who was nick-named as “Star”, he came to know about the details of the plot that was being hatched against Pakistan by the CIA. Imtiaz disclosed that “Star” was taken to the US where he had received instructions as how he was supposed to operate. Heavily financed, “Star” when came back told the IB chief in his debriefing that he was assigned multiple tasks but the topmost assignment was to find out complete details of the deficiency in the security system of Pakistanís nuclear programme, the exact location of strategic arsenals and the nature of their security arrangements and weaknesses. “Star”, he said, was also asked to create a favourable lobby in the corridors of power to seek policy decisions on the Kashmir issue in accordance with the aspiration of Washington. Imtiaz said that “Star” was also asked to fuel regionalism with focus on the activation of the demand for the creation of a Seraiki province. In this regard, Imtiaz said, “Star” was to create an NGO based in Islamabad and having branches in Bahawalpur and Sindh. Imtiaz said that one more assignment given to “Star” by the CIA was to weaken the extreme emotional attachment of the common Pakistanis with Islamic values. He said that his interaction with “Star” continued and the latter was successfully working as a double agent for Pakistan till the dismissal of the Nawaz Sharif government, which also led to his immediate resignation. Imtiaz said that on the basis of his each and every interaction with “Star”, he used to make his hand written notes all of which were saved in the safe of the DG IB. Later, what happened to those notes, Brigadier Imtiaz does not know. He, however, said that “Star” later left Pakistan and got settled in a foreign country. “Star”, according to Imtiaz, had offered his cooperation on the condition that he would never be handed over to any other IB operator. REFERENCE: Brig Imtiaz reveals CIA plots Ansar Abbasi Tuesday, September 01, 2009 http://www.thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDetail.aspx?ID=24241&Cat=13&dt=9/1/2009

PPP never fail to mention Mehran Bank Scandal and IJI BUT Benazir Bhutto - PPP had also used Filthy and Blood riddled Money of Mehran Bank to topple the then PML-N Government of Pir Sabir Shah through PPP leader Major (Rted) Aftab Sherpao (later became Musharraf Loyalist) 

 1994 - However, the PPP was able to form its government in the Sindh province only, where it had an absolute majority. In the Punjab, the PPP was forced to align with the Pakistan Muslim League (Junejo Group) to form a government, in which the leader of the minor coalition party, Mian Manzoor Wattoo, (leading only 16 MPAs out of 240) was the Chief Minister. In Baluchistan, Nawab Zulfikar Ali Magsi formed a coalition government since no political party got majority seats. In the North West Frontier Province, Pir Sabir Shah of the PML/N, with the support of the Awami National Party, formed a coalition government. In a bid to get hold of the provincial governments, the center first successfully tried to topple the government of Sabir Shah in the NWFP through political maneuvering and horse-trading. Eqbal Ahmed gives a graphic account of the overthrow of the NWFP government through undemocratic means on February 27, 1994: "Independent MPAs -- popularly known as Lotas -- were being kept sequestered in Islamabad's WAPDA House by the party in power. They had defected from the NWFP coalition obviously in return for the greater favors from those in power at the Center. Other MPAs from NWFP in the federal government's hands were also held in the capital. When the day arrived for them to drag democracy into the filth of their ambitions, the government ferried them from Islamabad to Peshawar in three helicopters, reportedly belonging to the Cabinet Division. The Federal Minister of Interior received them at Peshawar's Army Stadium. They were guarded and escorted by hundreds of battle-ready soldiers. Later, when Day One's dismal business was done, they were flown back to Islamabad away from their home province and their constituencies.[28] One and a half year later, in September 1995, the Central government decided to replace Wattoo with a PPP man but despite all the maneuvering and horse-trading, it failed to achieve the goal. Although, Wattoo was sacked by the President but the PPP was forced to accept Sardar Arif Nakai of the PML/J as a compromise candidate for the Chief Ministership since the PML/J chief, Hamid Nasir Chatha, refused to accept a PPP nominee. In both cases the central government relied on a presidential proclamation of emergency, under article 234 of the constitution, to sort out its opponents in the provinces. Means other than democratic were used to dispose of political opponents in the NWFP and troublesome allies in the Punjab. Benazir, for all her western education and secular background, had to make concessions to Islamic populism and never more so than at the present time, when things were going badly in Kashmir, Karachi is terrorized by rival gangs and ethnic tensions are rising.[29] It is a strange contradiction of the Pakistani society that while on the one hand, it does not return a purely clerics-led religious political party, such as the Jamaat-i-Islami to power, on the other, it cannot disregard the emotive appeal of religion. In recent elections, the Jamaat lost on all but three seats and was virtually eliminated from Punjab which was otherwise regarded as its strongest base. Yet, at the first opportunity after coming to power Benazir felt the need to appoint Maulana Kausar Niazi, as chairman of the Council of Islamic Ideology, who announced that within a matter of months, all laws would be brought in consonance with Quran and Shariah. The PPP cooperated with Jamiat-ul-Ulema-i-Islam, headed by Maulana Fazlur Rahman. The Maulana, while announcing his party's decision to work closely with the PPP, nevertheless, expressed the view that he regarded the fact of a government being headed by a woman as "un-Islamic". Pragmatically, however, his party decided to cooperate with the government and reconcile itself to the fact that the head of the government happened to be a woman. REFERENCE: ISLAMIC PAKISTAN: ILLUSIONS & REALITY Sattar Ghazal http://ghazali.net/book1/Chapter9a/page_3.html

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